Press Release

IFI secures fines of €8,500 against two landowners for environmental destruction at two rivers

Trumera river Laois damage

Trumera, Mountrath, where the river channel was dug out, deepened, reprofiled and the riparian vegetation removed

Inland Fisheries Ireland has secured combined fines of €8,500 against two separate landowners for destroying stretches of their local rivers in Laois and Tipperary.

In Co. Laois Mr Michael Hosey was convicted of carrying out works on 800 metres of river channel at Trumera, Mountrath, thereby impacting the habitats of trout, lamprey and eels along the river.

In Co. Tipperary, Mr Milo Cuddihy was convicted of carrying out instream works on 300 metres of the Lingaun River at Breanormore, affecting the habitats of salmon, trout, lamprey and eel populations.

Lingaun river

Realignment of Lingaun River with river bed material on bankside

Commenting on both cases, Lynda Connor, South-Eastern River Basin District Director at Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) noted: “These were acts of ecological destruction. The actions of the defendants demonstrated a real disregard for the rivers, their fish species and habitats.

"IFI will continue to prosecute such illegal activity in fulfilment of its remit to protect and conserve Ireland's important inland fisheries resource.

“The decimation and removal of a river’s habitat can be devastating in terms of its effects on fish. It can also impact instream biodiversity such as vegetation and insects.”

Mr Milo Cuddihy carried out instream works - works inside the river bed and banks - on the Lingaun River, Co. Tipperary, where 300 metres of river channel had been destroyed.

Mr Cuddihy was fined a total of €4,000, and directed to pay a further €750 in costs to IFI.

IFI became aware of the issue on January 28th 2023, and the case was heard at Carrick-on-Suir District Court on July 5th 2023.

Lingaun river destruction

Evidence of deepening of Lingaun River

Separately, Mr Michael Hosey was also found guilty of two breaches of fisheries legislation for the destruction of a local river.

Portlaoise District Court heard Mr Hosey’s motivation for carrying out the work was to drain land to alleviate flooding. 

At a sitting on June 16th, the court was told that 800 metres of river channel on Mr Hosey’s property, and on an adjoining property, had been dug out, deepened, reprofiled and the river bank vegetation removed.

He carried out these extensive instream works in the closed season at his farm in Trumera, Mountrath, Co. Laois in December 2022.

Mr Hosey received total fines of €3,000, and was also ordered to contribute €750 towards the costs of the prosecution.


Trumera, Mountrath, where the river channel was dug out, deepened, reprofiled and the riparian vegetation removed

Lynda Connor of Inland Fisheries Ireland continued: "Landowners need to seek all necessary and relevant information from their advisors, and from Inland Fisheries Ireland, before carrying out any works near, or on, a watercourse adjacent to their land.

“The appropriate window for any instream works is between July and September, but only with the guidance and permission of IFI. During the closed season, from October to June, no works should take place in a river.

“IFI continues to encourage members of the public to report incidents such as this, and those of water pollution, fish kills, and illegal fishing to its 24/7 phone number, 0818 34 74 24.”

Landowners can refer to further guidance on minding Ireland’s watercourses.